Newly Diagnosed? Should You Question the Use of Insulin?

By russellstamets Latest Reply 2012-01-24 11:07:39 -0600
Started 2011-10-09 12:01:12 -0500

If you’ve recently been told you have either Type 1, LADA, or Type 2 Diabetes, there are decisions about the rest of your life that you may want to decide for yourself. First, you have to recognize the points at which options exist. One such fork in the road is when you’re first told you have to start shooting insulin. Some of you will have a pancreas functioning so low at this crossroads that you have no choice. But the heretical point I’m making for the rest of you is, “Why rush?” I’m extremely lucky to have a brilliant, dedicated, strictly evidence-based DO who answered my questions (it’s still up to you to ask). I asked questions like, “if I still have morning fasting BS readings near normal sometimes, doesn’t that mean my pancreas has the ability to produce normal levels of insulin?” Instead of saying, “it doesn’t matter, you must start insulin now, here’s the prescription”, my DO took the time to share his opinion that there’s no evidence that immediate insulin use is shown to have any better outcomes in a case like mine. It’s true he fully believed then that I would eventually have no choice. But he respected my desire to to use this rarely recognized window of time to explore any reasonable options. He warned me that any endocrinologist would disagree with this plan, and would order insulin, period. That was more than two years ago. So far, so good with my holistic approach experiment (detailed in other posts). I’ve trended steadily down to an A1c of 5.5 and am holding steady. Even if this miraculous reversal ended tomorrow, A1c rose dangerously, and insulin was my only choice to live, I would consider the 2 years gained (without shots in the stomach) to be priceless.

If I were more cynical, I’d suspect the influence of big Pharma money in the Diabetes Establishment’s blind spot regarding the knee jerk use of insulin. I particularly wonder about so many Type 2’s being prescribed it when their pancreas is obviously still functioning and they don’t have the extra hurdle of autoimmune destruction to contend with. But, I don’t think it’s really a conspiracy. I think the assumption by so many well meaning healthcare professionals is that you’re not capable of walking the hard non-insulin road. I think the assumption is that you’re weak, and that there’s no point hoping you’ll give up your beer and potato chips. It’s just simpler to save and extend your life with daily shots, and move on to the next one in line.
Are they right?

50 replies

maros mom
maros mom 2011-10-16 17:11:02 -0500 Report

hi i am new to this. my fiance had a heart attack 3 weeks ago and had a stent put in. if dealin with that was not stressfull enough they also tell us that he has type 2 diabetes. i am trin to learn about how to cook for both heart healthy and no sugar which is hard to find both. would like to find good receipes that are for bth. i have been on the internet tryin to find info on both so that we can both be better educated on what we are goin to have to live healthier. we have 3 kids together nd i know that both disease can be deadly if u dont do whats right. just tryin to take in all the knowledge i can

russellstamets 2011-10-16 19:36:55 -0500 Report

Hi maros mom! You've definitely found a good place for recipes and hearth healthy eating. I think almost any good type 2 diet is also good for cardio. Check out the "recipes" link at the left of these pages. There are better cooks here than me, but I'll offer up a few general tips: turkey bacon and turkey salami and chicken bratwurst are surprisingly good. We bought a George Foreman grill which is amazing. I still eat steaks and pork, but I keep it lean and grilled only. Quinoa is a very cool rice replacement. Not a starch and a complete protein. Goes with anything. Whole grains, oatmeal, sprouted barley bread, rye bread, whole wheat pasta, are all helping replace the potatoes and white flour foods for me. Reading the labels to avoid saturated fat is hard. For me it's animal fat, so nuts (lots o nuts) and olive oil, etc. are OK. All Dairy has had to go. But like I said, you'll find no shortage of great food advice. Good luck. Russell

Mickey/CCHT 2011-10-13 01:38:04 -0500 Report

Hi! I'm new to all of this. I have never been part of a dicussion like this. But having been diagnosed with Type2 a year ago i have been taking pills to try and control my bs. I'm sad to say i have not been doing a very good job of it. I guess I just thougt as long as i took the pills i could pretty much continue on, put it does not work that way. That is how i ended up here looking for a better way to live. I really do not want to shoot insulin and if i dont get myself undercontrol that is where i'm headed! Reading some posts I'm very encouraged that as I take control and stop the denial I have support and options. I look forward to going back to your earlier posts to see what you have learned about a holistic approach.

MoeGig 2011-10-13 22:29:45 -0500 Report

I'm sorry, you guys are too afraid of shooting insulin. Diabetes means your pancreas is not producing insulin. The natural solution is to replace that insulin. Everything else is a cop-out. If you're afraid of the needle, then, you'll have to get use to it. All these other solutions are a figment of your imagination. Insulin is the all natural solution. You need to focus on the most effective way to get to an A1c less than 7…and this is the only way you get there. (46yr Type 1 without complications…and you definitely don't want any of that).

jayabee52 2011-10-16 19:55:18 -0500 Report

Hey Moe! I had been using insulin for about 4 years (and on oral medsfor about 11), so for me it is not fear of shooting insulin. I am a T 2 who found out I can get along without diabetes meds IF i eat very carefully. If my condition changes I will have no problem going back to injections.

But being without meds is worth to me the P.I.T.A. it causes, so I continue even though it might be easier for me to go back to my old way of eating and back on insulin. It is not fear of injecting why I am not doing it. I avoid injections BECAUSE I CAN and still maintain a healthy level BG.

MoeGig 2011-10-16 20:13:19 -0500 Report

Whatever works for you…Good Luck. The main objective is maintaining an A1c in the 6's. If you can do that, then it's a success.

russellstamets 2011-10-13 22:36:35 -0500 Report

Chill Moe

MoeGig 2011-10-13 23:05:37 -0500 Report

You know, I'm not trying to be a pain, but, I consider this disease a very serious challenge not to be taken lightly. I have managed to avoid complications over these 46 years, and have taken a fairly conservative approach to achieving that goal…that few people on this web site or anywhere else have been able to achieve—only 1 that I know—. Most others suffer all kinds of horrible/expensive/deblilitating complications…and ultimately death…and there's no turning back. Once you're on the path to taking this lightly, you can't heal what has already been damaged…clogged arteries in your eyes, kidneys, and feet.

Anyway, hope you have a good day, but if you want to avoid major trouble, strongly consider these facts. For more info, see my link:

russellstamets 2011-10-14 00:03:05 -0500 Report

Thank you. Any information is always welcome. I do not take this lightly either.
I have completely rebuilt my life from the inside out. It's a hard road. If you don't believe I've taken an A1c from 11.1 to 5.5 and have no complications…oh well. I could've done what I've done, kept quiet, and sailed off into a healthy sunset. It would probably be better for me. I've always been a private guy. There's some stress from going public and it'll affect my numbers for a while. But I had to put it out here, it's too important with the epidemic upon us. All the newly diagnosed are just going to have to sort through all the facts for themselves. Mine are at

russellstamets 2011-10-13 09:41:31 -0500 Report

Hi Mickey, I think we all agree you've already accomplished much by recognizing where you need to go. Without the autoimmune hurdle, you've really got a chance! Please remember everyone is different. Nobody's recipe will be exactly the one for you. But I share mine now because I feel fantastic, in mind and body. Check for details of my recipe and please feel free to ask for any more detail of my experience that might help you in yours. Russell

Mickey/CCHT 2011-10-13 14:35:14 -0500 Report

Thanks for the advice. I'm totaly going to check out your blog. I know some things will work for one person and not the other, I'm just looking at as much info as possible to see what will work for me. Thanks again!

MoeGig 2011-10-12 19:11:55 -0500 Report

Having been Type 1 since 1965, I had no choice since my pancreas, from the beginning, was not working at all. You are fortunate to be testing well which is the ultimate objective. If you can maintain an A1c under 7, that's the gold standard. If you can do it without insulin, fine. If you can't, then you have to do something. Extreme diet, meds, or whatever it is, you have to do it to be under 7. On the other hand, taking insulin is not all that bad…it's very simple and easy. Many Type 2 diabetics trying to avoid shots end up taking drugs that make the whole process of maintaining a low A1c very difficult. I don't believe your objective should be to avoid taking insulin…it should be to maintain an A1c below 7..whatever that takes.

russellstamets 2011-10-12 20:42:50 -0500 Report

Well said. Big Pharma has undoubtedly come up with worse options than insulin. And when people have to shoot it , they should. It's just the "when" that's in question. If your pancreas is still functioning, and you can trend your A1c down, even if it's over 7 for a while, why not give it a chance. According to my sources, it takes a while for high blood sugars to produce damage if you don't have other risks. The point of avoiding insulin is not just about the hit to quality of life that the 24/7 rigamarole of insulin entails. It's also about the cost. There are people on this site who simply can't afford it. All that aside, I have to say I'm always impressed by you guys who've so effectively done it since the dark ages of when readings took minutes to appear, etc.
Fair winds and calm seas, Cap'n

sheriden 2011-10-11 15:02:55 -0500 Report

Glad to see some one else has a DO on here I was all but told that I needed a real doctor. I try and stay calm stress and numbers do not mix and I was able to knowing that these people were not up on there doctors education, DOs go to school longer to learn better ways of treating things. But I worked for both MDs and DOs. good doctors just try to do what is right. Dose not matter what type. However my DO is working with me to stay off insulin and I know it is up to me to get in gear and do what is right for my body. I don't know sometimes I can be like a two year old and want what I want, but know it is up to me for the most part to get better and stay better. Thanks.

russellstamets 2011-10-11 16:51:34 -0500 Report

As you may have seen me write elsewhere, avoiding the daily shot in the stomach is a HUGE motivator for me. I wish I knew exactly how I'm making the "wants" go away. I was completely in love with my beer, fried food, cheese and baked potatoes. Somehow after 7 months, I'm completely comfortable without them. The mental game is complicated, and different for everyone. I suspect, for me, the acupuncture and meditation are key. Oh, and you're right. A DO probably not only knows more, but also THINKS more. Best of luck. Russell

LauraS 2011-10-11 10:21:38 -0500 Report

I've been having this battle with my doctor. Not for insulin but for injections of Victoza or Byetta. I can't afford these shots and my insurance is limited. I was given Victoza on my first doctor visit. I later found that my insurance had a dollar limit and had to stop injections. Now I was put on Amaryl and gained 10 lbs in water in only 1 month. Then told my blood pressure went up, yeah, I gained 10 lbs of water. I stopped taking that and decided that "I" need to take control and not let the doctor tell me that all diabetes meds cause weight gain except these injections she's pushing. I'm already losing weight again since off the Amaryl. I don't want to ever go on Insulin and hopefully I'll have enough will power to conquer this condition on my own.

Natim 2011-10-11 03:54:00 -0500 Report

Hi All
I totally agree, I was diagnosed about 4 months ago and my Dr and the dietician wanted to put me on insulin right away and I refused and went for a second opinion with the specialist who confirmed type 2 but not insulin type.
I started the recommended diet and a combination of physical exercises together with two tabs of Diamicron a day and within a week my levels droped to almost normal and after about 2-3 weeks my lsugar levels were very normal.
What a can also add is that after a month of steady normal readings I cut down to 1 Tab a day and my blood sugar levels are as of the normal person and I look forward to contriling it with only diet and exercises soon and I am confident of a sure success.
Yes the health practitioners want to help however at times they settle for the easier options without trying the alternatives which I feel it is very wrong.
When I was reading the insert of my tablets I noticed that they suggest that you only take them if the diet and exercise does not work and yet my Dr and dietician started me the other way round.
NB! Follow your heart, be the pioneer of your health, Be determined to succeed, Aquire as much information as possible, See the end results in your mind` eye and you will sure succeed.

annesmith 2011-10-12 16:41:19 -0500 Report

HI——I am wondering HOW in the heck one doctor would tell you you are insulin dependent type 1, then the next doctor finds you to be a type 2 noninsulin dependent diabetic——that is such a WIDE range of opinions, that I am STUPIFIED. HOW did one diagnose you type 1, then the other type 2? I am ASTOUNDED——that does not even make much sense at all. So, if the 1st doctor was wrong, then you would have probably DIED from the insulin?——I'd be mad if I were you, but I am glad you got the final correct diagnosis———I mean, did one test say your A1C was around a 9 or 10 or 11 or even 13 on up, then the next doctor found your a1C to be around 7?———The numbers don't add up , unless I am missing something…write me back—-sincerely, ANNE

rlk-fd-ems 2011-10-10 20:21:17 -0500 Report

Wow, I am not sure what I am hearing here.
If you have blood sugar levels that are outside of the normal range and considered to be within the range of being a diabetic according to the medical community then you have two options. No treatment or treatment.
If your choice is treatment then you have more options such as, diet, exercise, non-traditional treatments, herbs, oral medications, and insulin.
I believe that the correct options are the ones that work for you. I also believe that you and your medical team can make these decisions based on the results of your treatment options.
In my case insulin was my choice after diet, exercise, and oral medications failed to bring my blood sugar down to a level where the long term negative affects on my body were at a minimum.
Do not get me wrong. There is nothing wrong with taking insulin. It has saved the lives of countless people. But for me I wanted to do the healthy life style thing and I did lose weight. In fact I am in better shape than I have been in years. Almost down to my high school weight, but this still did not get my blood sugar into the normal range so I am now on insulin.
I also believe that your treatment options are limited to the progression of the disease process. I guess that this is why treatment options are so different for different people.

russellstamets 2011-10-10 21:07:52 -0500 Report

Sounds like you heard just fine. You're one of the lucky ones like me who recognized and made clear choices. That's what I'm talking about.

valentine lady
valentine lady 2011-10-10 13:22:36 -0500 Report

Where I agree with you and wish my insulin level would have been some what with-in range, it was not. I was forced to take insulin at the Doctors office when I was diagnosed. My A1C was 9. something and my BS was almost 500 and had been for about 6 months with a PA I was seeing. She held fast to your belief, but instead called it boarder-line diabetes. So sometimes one can't hold off, your very fortunate…Valentine Lady

IMUA 2011-10-10 05:40:40 -0500 Report

I totally agree.My endo wanted to put me on insulin my first visit…really,I have not been given a chance to fix this.For those of you not comming from a stoke or heart attack,give yourself a chance.Its not easy but the alternative is no easier.

russellstamets 2011-10-10 08:34:37 -0500 Report

Thanks IMUA. You said in a few words what my many attempted, ",give yourself a chance.Its not easy but the alternative is no easier."

annesmith 2011-10-10 00:47:51 -0500 Report

Sorry to write you so much lately——I do not want to make you mad or anything, but I find your e-mails to be very very good and interesting. Like I said, I am so so so SO relieved to have found someone else in a weird zone similar to mine. You made a really good point about insulin—-and something else dawned on me about insulin——When I was given it when I almost died, well, I would have died if they did not give it to me on that fateful night 6 years ago, but, when they gave me 2-4 shots of it, they definitely did the right thing, BUT, I am looking ahead—-I noticed that it felt like I was on a gigantic ELEVATOR when it bumped me down from 701 to 144——so, I am thinking, and have been for quite some time now—-yes, I needed it that night without a doubt, but, for the future, I am thinking—-no WONDER I am trying to stay off of it, as , if it makes a person feel like they are coming down rapidly on a SCARY elevator ride, then…aaaaaahhh, I don't know about you, but it is not something I am looking forward to. I am talking about insulin reactions—-they are SCARY—-I worked with a young lady that was insulin dependent from age 3 on up, and she told me that she , all of her LIFE, had what you call insulin REACTIONS, where, she'd shoot herself up with it when her blood sugar reached say 600, then, shortly thereafter, OH …she fell down to the 30s temporarily, then it would come up to a normal level, and she would COLLAPSE on her floor at home, and BARELY get to the phone to call 911———so they could come over and help her up—-poor girl…I had this happen in 2005 when they tried me on Metformin—-turned out my pancreas was rejecting it, but, one night, I was at my housekeeping job at an apartment, when, OOOOOOH, my ears starting ringing BAD, my heart pounded really seriously bad, and I felt like I was going to have another diabetic seizure, only this one was BAD…seriously bad…I was working alone that night, I told myself, " SIT DOWN on the couch" So, I sat down—-I felt worse. I then got up, my whole body starting SHAKING, and my ears rang even worse. I felt like I was dying…I called a friend, he said my speech was slurred——-I told him " Forget it, I'm calling 911—-I feel like I am going to black out RIGHT NOW…" He called them for me, they tried to keep me conscious on a 3-way call, I ended up ON THE FLOOR , barely conscious——thought I was having a stroke at that point. MY WHOLE POINT ON THIS IS: any kind of medications, insulin, etc, one should CAREFULLY consider before jumping into it——I would have been better off with NO Metformin. See my point? Someone could go on insulin as a type 2, many do now, but, they should be CAREFUL, as, the side affects can be very very strong. I happened to respond beautifully to the insulin I was given they said, and I agree, BUT, the feeling of falling down off an elevator —-that is the primary reason I did not fill the prescription for the insulin they had ready for me——-and, to this day, SIX years later, I still to a degree fear it——I am continuing to do everything , or a lot of things , to stay off of it. Sorry if I sounded like a WHIMP, but, seriously, people , especially I think type 2s, need to be careful before jumping into it…sincerely, ANNE

russellstamets 2011-10-10 16:08:00 -0500 Report

Anne, your stories are a window into the scary parts of all this. We can't ignore them.

annesmith 2011-10-10 22:17:17 -0500 Report

Yes…they are , and I hope I did not scare anybody too bad…The #1 lesson I have learned over the last year is: make sure I tell the doctor EVERYTHING. I can't believe in some ways how dumb I was…I used to go in, wait for the doctor, then give him a verbal summary of everything, without writing everything down. I learned the hard way, that if one just does this, then you end up with the doctor saying " Well, there really is not too much wrong with you"——I found that I needed to be a little more assertive…I honestly didn't realize it until about a year ago, and, I literally must must must bring in all my #s from the last 5 years…why? Otherwise, all they can see in front of them is the last 3 months, or maybe 4 months, and if that happens to be my low phase, then, they presume I always have low numbers, then they say " You are not even diabetic." ANNE

annesmith 2011-10-09 23:48:09 -0500 Report

Hi !!! IN my opinion, they are wrong. Insulin is not the answer to everything. I could be wrong, and don't want to break any rules of this site, but, in my opinion, insulin is good for 2 things: to save the eyesight if the eyes are in danger and the limbs and if the beta cells are below 20% function, because, once the beta cells are below that 20% insulin function, that is like riding on one tire instead of two, or in some cases, no tires at all—-I feel very very sorry for those with 1%, 3%, 5% beta production——I would not wish that on anybody. Like I said, or will say here, I COULD be wrong. Type 2 diabetes CAN kill, and , a type 2 can go blind pretty quick if they are not careful, however, if they can regulate their blood sugars consistently down to normal range, I honestly don't think they need insulin at all…HOPE I DID NOT OFFEND ANYBODY HERE—-like I said, I could be wrong. If a type 2 is LOW INCOME, under a lot of stress, and cannot get enough to eat, I'd say they need to find out about taking Metformin or Glypycide..overall, to me, insulin should be only administered to under 20% beta cell functioning people. This is a rare case, but, I know a man who is 84 years old now, and he was type 1 juvenile…he resumed playing tennis when he turned 50, but he decided on his own he was going to play harder——he got his insulin knocked down to ONE unit a DAY, then he went off of it for 9 years—he ate only greens and no dessert——ZERO animal fats and fried foods. He said it really DID work—-for an entire nine years—-nobody but me believes him—-poor guy. He's telling the truth, BUT, when he reached age 60, he had to get back on insulin again, and he takes it to this day—-it stopped working he said when he slowed up from old age and stopped playing tennis. Nobody believes him, or , they say " You were not type 1 as a child, then, sir,…you were type 2"—-not true—-he was type 1 without a doubt——I feel sorry for him, but, God helps us all…ha, ha. He's 84 years old now, on insulin again all the time, but just 5-8 units a day, because he still walks and eats a lot of no-fried food. He said he's type1 without a doubt—been that way since age 4 , but he's defined as a higher functioning type 1—-he can't live without the insulin, but his pancreas produces very very little of it——I agree with you on even if you have no choice soon—at least you can look back and say " I tried to stay off of insulin"—-that is exactly my approach, too——-I have had insulin, they said ideally I need to take it everyday, BUT, there is something about me that always says " NO…I want to go down as someone that only took it ABSOLUTELY when I HAVE to." I agree with you almost completely, AND, being you brought your A1c down to a 5.5, this is good…only thing I wonder though, is, and I wonder on my body on this, too, it is possible you might be better with insulin in SMALL small doses, to help give your body the message of " Here is a small boost." JUST A THOUGHT—ANNE

Type1Lou 2011-10-09 18:29:07 -0500 Report

Russell, I don't disagree totally with what you say but would not include us Type 1's in the group who can do without insulin. We are Type 1 because our pancreas no longer produces insulin naturally. For Type 2's who are still producing some insulin, certainly weight management and making the correct dietary choices might result in not needing any drugs at all to control their diabetes. We do live in a culture that tries to treat every ailment with another pill or drug when too often some common sense and hard decisions will do the trick.

russellstamets 2011-10-10 08:32:34 -0500 Report

Thanks for the chance to clarify Lou. I include some Type 1's in this train of thought. Probably not the traditional juvenile Type 1 where onset to complete loss of insulin production is to short a time to attempt reversal. But for adult onset, like my LADA, where there my be a few years to stop the autoimmune attack and the pancreas is still functioning, why not give the Betas a chance? I was told I'd require insulin by now. I don't know what parts of my approach have worked to stabilize and restore my Beta function to near normal. And I don't know if it'll last forever, but for those with no complications, why not try to achieve the best fix, a healthy pancreas? Thanks again for continuing the discussion.

annesmith 2011-10-10 22:41:10 -0500 Report

You are the first person I have talked to , outside of one guy about 2 years ago, who believes me on that SOME type 1s can go without insulin for awhile. Some can, as, like I said , I know an 84 year old man with a true story on this. He WAS juvenile type 1, had severe diabetic seizures his entire childhood, saw angels, almost died several times during childhood. His parents were severely abusive, and told him he was to see a psychiatrist——they locked him up in his bedroom whenever his sugars got high everyday, and he was brutally punished—-the parents told him " You are NOT diabetic, it is all in your head, and you WILL suffer severe repercutions if you CONTINUE to say you are diabetic when you are not." He kept getting sick of course , was lucky to stay alive, VERY lucky, and he was given 10-12 different psychiatric pills to "CALM" him down——that's awful. He finally got the insulin he needed when he moved out at age 21, and the doctor said he was VERY very very lucky to be alive. He gave him insulin right away, then the man stayed on insulin all the way to age 50—-for 30 years. He then made up his mind he was going to resume playing tennis again, like he did all his life, only this time he played harder. He also went on a strict strict strict diet—-an extreme diet of pure greens and nuts and berries, with dessert only about once a month . His needs for insulin fell down to none, but he still remained diabetic of course—-he just brought it down to a lower healthier level. He was able to stay off of insulin for an entire 9 years before he had to get back on it again, and today he continues on it. He told me he only takes about 5 units a day…this is a RARE case—-yes, but this , along with myself——VERY very similar situation happened to me, does prove that it CAN be done, BUT, him and I , like I said were diagnosed as LOWER end type 1s———most type 1s are higher end than him and I, and no, we are not LADA or other—-we are type 1s——It is VERY FRUSTRATING in some ways—-EXTREMELY frustrating, because, nobody BELIEVES him and I —-except you —-and THANK YOU by the way for believing me…I gave up explaining my TYPE to people, nothing against most people, but they rarely believe what I tell them—-they do at first, whether I tell them about myself or the older man I know, but, then, they change their mind, and say " NO…WAIT a minute——that can't really be true." I was wondering, do you have any SUGGESTIONS as to how this older man and I can tell people, that YES, we are type 1s, not type 2s, and we have been able to temporarily not take insulin? There probably is not much of an answer to this, but, if you DO have any suggestions, that would be GREAT, because, if we were type 2, that would be great , , but we are TIRED, just VERY very tired, of trying to explain our RARE cases——99% of type 1s are on insulin all the time for life——it's kind of like this: We don't want to be called GEORGE when our names are ANNE and AL——HA, HA…ANNE

annesmith 2011-10-09 23:55:09 -0500 Report

Yes, most type 1s cannot so without insulin at all…no doubt —-this is Anne by the way..ha, ha…yes, it has been proven over and over that type 1s must have insulin to live, BUT, there are some RARE cases where they got off of it temporarily, anywhere from 6 weeks to 8-9 years…I am not trying to argue with you at all, but I know a man that was type 1 juvenile and when he reached the age of 50 , he started playing tennis again, but he played it harder, and he went on an extreme extreme diet of pure greens and zero fried foods and zero dessert. He got off of insulin, but had to go back on it nine years later. He's on it now of course——he was not type 2 either, as the tests he had done showed he was type 1 all his life. To me, to play tennis that hard, then eat all greens is not realistic living, and therefore he should have kept taking the insulin and played moderate tennis. You will never believe what I just told you —I know—but, the man told me the truth without a doubt—he has no mental issues at all. He says nobody believes him, except for me and maybe 2 other people. ANNE

Kirla 2011-10-09 14:01:29 -0500 Report

I don’t see any reason why we can’t control with diet and or exercise for the rest of our lives. I have been doing it for over 2½ years now with mostly just diet. I went from an A1C of 14.1 to 5.9 in about 4 months. Have been keeping it at or below 6 ever since. I have read stories of people on Dlife that have been doing it for over 10 years and still doing great.

Doctors, Dieticians and Diabetic Educators are just practicing what they learn in school. There being taught that all people can eat the same. When I first looked up the diabetic pyramid I didn’t see any difference from the regular one. All the medical people are being taught that if people just take their meds they can eat the 45-60 grams of carbs per meal and 15-30 grams for snacks between meals and they should be ok. They also are being taught that the whole grain foods help with blood sugar control. Taking pills, eating whole grain and carefully controlling there diet, a lot of people can succeed with the above plan. But there are a lot of people who the plan doesn’t work for. So there told to keep eating the whole grain along with a high carb low fat diet and put on insulin. This is supposed to be normal.

Some people decide that there may be a better way and will explore the low carb diets and a lot have been successful. When I first came online there weren’t many people who follow a low carb diet to control blood sugar. But lately I have run across more and more people who are having great success following the low carb diets.

Congratulations on your success.
Good luck

princessbeiter 2011-10-13 20:25:24 -0500 Report

I don't know about the past, but I was diagnosed with Type 2 last November and I have found all legitimate sources say that low-carb, low-fat, and high protein diets are the best for controlling T2 diabetes. Most of the sources I have seen recommend diet and exercise to control diabetes, but they don't recommend staying away from all medications.

Many people can do it on diet and exercise alone, but most cannot. Face it, if we're overweight we didn't get there by watching what we ate. We got there because we either learned bad eating habits as children or we use food to self-medicate our emotional issues. We aren't likely to change that easily, even though we know our actions could kill us.

If legitimate sites pushed a "non-medication" agenda, some people would not survive or would have horrible side effects of diabetes.

annesmith 2011-10-10 00:11:22 -0500 Report

I agree with you for the most part—-it's been proven even more now that diet and exercise work in all types of diabetes. However, for type 1s, LADAs, and the type 1s in a weird zone like myself, we have to go to more extremes in the diet and exercise, which is good. If someone has a beta cell production of only 1%, 3%, then, they have to have SOME insulin to survive, or moderate insulin, otherwise, their bodies will shut down, and they will die——I know from experience…I ended up in the E.R. with a blood sugar of 701 and my body was literally shutting down—-they had to give me insulin or I would have died. I was eating all greens and drinking skim milk before this happened, and walking 6 days a week for a whole year and a half…I agree with you for most of it, though—newest research and evidence has proven that even in type 1 juvenile diabetics, their insulin can be knocked way down if they exercise at the same time everyday and they consistently eat healthy . It's hard, though, as when someone goes to a birthday party, whether it be a child or an adult type 1, what are they supposed to do —say " I want a piece of cake with salad on top of it"—ha, ha, ha, ha…I try to keep a sense of humor…ha, ha…realistically, most insulin dependent people can reduce their insulin by a lot, but, it takes time. That is my honest opinion—-I have had a lot of diabetic seizures over the years, so, ideally, I need some insulin, but, you won't find me RUNNING to go get it—-because, I just feel I can hold off as long as possible for that—-my goal for the rest of my life is to not go beyond 5 units a day, and to continue my running and walking—-I eat donuts, but just not the entire box of them, ha, ha,ha…when I eat a Mcdonald's cheesburger ( which I LOVE), I walk harder during my walk that day…I am not perfect, but, you won't find me running to go get insulin—-I feel sorry for those that have no choice at ALL—-but, even they can eventually reduce the amount they have to take to stay alive…no offense to anybody by the way…ANNE

russellstamets 2011-10-09 14:33:35 -0500 Report

Nice summary Kevin. I wonder if those of us who do it with diet, activity, and stress control can spread the word that these "deprivations" we choose don't turn out to mean that much compared to all the benefits of a healthy, high-functioning body and a clear mind. Good luck to you too!

annesmith 2011-10-10 00:22:06 -0500 Report

I agree…not to offend anybody, but, some people eat tons and tons of ice cream sundaes, french fries, and YES, I love that stuff, too, but, some people would be a lot happier if they just tried to reduce some of that stuff…I don't care WHAT type of diabetes they have…insulin dependent for life, diet control, pills…if they try to reduce some of that, their insulin needs will fall…they probably will never get completely off of insulin…very understandable, but, just to generally make better choices, and to walk a little bit every day…that makes a big difference. For example, if a person eats 5 donuts a day, then eats a couple of pizzas a day, etc, they are in great danger——they need to cut back right away, or , they will not live long. It's hard , though..we live in such a different society now…television, computers…people are coming up obese when 30 years ago they would have been normal weight…it's hard. There is NO such a thing as " No matter what I do , nothing works." NO SUCH A THING——not to sound like and ARMY GENERAL —-ha, ha, ha…but, everybody, even type 1s juvenile, CAN improve in some kind of ways…yes, type 1s will always need some kind of insulin to LIVE—no doubt, type 2s will often need pills to bump them down a little bit—understandable, but , nobody will ever convince me that diet and exercise work very little——diet and exercise, especially exercise in my experience, helps all types of diabetes. It's been proven over and over…ANNE

Gwen Morten
Gwen Morten 2011-10-09 13:08:10 -0500 Report

Hi! to a certain point you are right! Lots of drs do go right on and assume that insulin shots is needed because of all the other patients who don't do what they need to do for themselves and need shots more sooner than not! I'm guilty of not doing what I need to do all the time too but I'm not going to allow any dr to push me to shots!

russellstamets 2011-10-09 14:41:32 -0500 Report

Thanks for chiming in, Gwen! The more people taking charge of their health, the better.

annesmith 2011-10-10 00:25:59 -0500 Report

This is so very true. If everybody were to give in and say " I need pills , I need insulin" and not do any exercise at all, and eat everything they wanted under the sun, we'd be in one heck of a depressing society. I am not referring to type 1s that have to have insulin to survive—that's different—of course they should have insulin—-or they will die. I'm just saying for those in weird zones like you and myself, ha, ha…if WE can exercise and diet, then so can most others—-I guess tonight is the night I sound like an army general…ha, ha…ANNE

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